This weekend is the Fourth Sunday of Easter, also known as Good Shepherd Sunday. This Sunday gets its name from the gospel reading (John 10:11-18). In this gospel, Jesus describes himself as a shepherd.
In using this imagery, Jesus describes how he cares for us as somebody who cares for us. We have seen imagery of Jesus as a shepherd carrying a lamb. This is a very comforting image and brings to mind that we must allow Jesus to carry us through the difficult parts of our lives.
Here is the complete gospel reading:
“I am the good shepherd.
A good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.
A hired man, who is not a shepherd
and whose sheep are not his own,
sees a wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away,
and the wolf catches and scatters them.
This is because he works for pay and has no concern for the sheep.
I am the good shepherd,
and I know mine and mine know me,
just as the Father knows me and I know the Father;
and I will lay down my life for the sheep.
I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold.
These also I must lead, and they will hear my voice,
and there will be one flock, one shepherd.
This is why the Father loves me,
because I lay down my life in order to take it up again.
No one takes it from me, but I lay it down on my own.
I have power to lay it down, and power to take it up again.
This command I have received from my Father.”
Here are all of the readings for this Sunday:
First Reading: Acts 4:8-12
Responsorial Psalm 118:1, 8-9, 21-23, 26, 28-29
Second Reading: 1 John 3:1-2